Mexico’s new president creates truth commission on missing students

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador shows the signed decree to investigate the case of 43 missing students, during a ceremony with relatives of the students, at the National Palace in Mexico City on Monday. Photograph: Ronaldo Schemidt/AFP/Getty Images

Mexico’s new President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Monday said that the establishment of a truth commission is to investigate the fate of 43 students who disappeared in 2014.

The decree, which was presented to the families of the students and their lawyers at the government palace, was the first one signed by Lopez Obrador since he was sworn in on Dec. 1.

“We shall know the truth on what happened in Iguala four years ago so justice can prevail,’’ Interior Minister Olga Sanchez said.

The disappearance of the students from a rural teacher training school in Ayotzinapa caused outrage and heartache in Mexico, where around 35,000 people are missing.

Many cases are attributed to organised crime and others to security forces.

A government investigation concluded that the students’ bus was stopped by police in Iguala on the night of Sept. 26 to Sept. 27, 2014, and that they were then handed over to the Guerreros Unidos crime syndicate.

The government said they were mistaken for members of a rival gang, that were murdered, their bodies burned at a rubbish dump and their ashes thrown into a river.

However, experts from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights have disagreed with those conclusions, saying there was no scientific basis to conclude their bodies had been burned at a rubbish dump.

Nearly 120 people have been arrested in connection with the case, but none of them have been sentenced so far.

The truth commission will include family members of the students, government representatives and experts.

“This is a very clear signal to the entire country for these events never to happen again,’’ senior official Alejandro Encinas said.

Get more stories like this on Twitter and Telegram

Recommended Stories